Which IGCSE Subjects Should You Choose for University?

Timothy Hoffmann

Which IGCSE Subjects Should You Choose for University?

What subjects should you choose? Will they define your future? The answer is no, and you should not worry too much about it, but there are a couple of things you should keep in mind before choosing your IGCSE subjects.

Photo by Caleb Woods on Unsplash

The time to choose IGCSE subjects has come, and university seems ages away… and it really is. You have four years of school left before you even start your undergraduate course. Yet there’s someone in your class already freaking out about choosing the right IGCSE subjects for university, and it’s got you thinking. What subjects should you choose? Will they define your future? The answer is no, and you should not worry too much about it, but there are a couple of things you should keep in mind before choosing your IGCSE subjects.

University IGCSE Requirements

Most of the time, your IGCSE grades will not matter much, as universities will care mainly about your IB or A-Level grades. Although rare, some courses may have specific requirements at IGCSE level, but do not worry; these requirements are usually for mandatory IGCSE subjects like Mathematics or English, or a science in general. They will not ask for a specific IGCSE subject (apart from Maths and English), so don’t worry about universities rejecting you for choosing Biology instead of Chemistry for IGCSE.

Performance is more important

However, top universities will still look at your IGCSE results to get an overview of your academic achievement over time, so the better you perform, the stronger your application will be. Several universities look specifically at Maths and/or English, depending on the course, so you do not want to neglect them during IGCSE. For universities, it’s more about how you did in IGCSE, not what you did. But again, the main grades you will be using will be A-Levels, IB or equivalent, so do not panic if you do not get an A* in all your IGCSEs.

Keep your options open

Most students at IGCSE do not know what they want to study at university, which is completely fine. In that case, you want to study a range of subjects so that you have all your options open. Study at least a science, a foreign language, a humanities subject, and so on. That way, you will be sure that you will have a foundation for your undergraduate course, which will benefit your application and studies.

If you have your future planned out…

Alternatively, you may already know you what you want to study. You may know the exact course, or just that you want to study something related to science or languages. If that’s your case, try to “specialise” at IGCSE. For example, if you want to do a science degree, try to do all three sciences at IGCSE. By doing this, you will prepare yourself better for your future studies, making your life easier. Although this is a good idea, do not forget to still have contrasting subjects, especially if you are doing the IB afterwards, as you will have to choose subjects from different groups. So, specialise, but don’t overdo it.

The main takeaway from reading this is that your IGCSE are not crucial for university, so do not overthink it and do not get anxious about it. Work hard, perform as well as you can and enjoy your studies.